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In character design, there is the crucial question:

Short Hair or Long Hair? Short implies that the character is practical, independent, and strong. For women, long hair means that she's feminine, beautiful, even princessy, but on men it's just plain awesome. So, with these two opposing hair philosophies, will the creator choose the practicality and ease of a short cut, or the awesomeness of hair that goes fwish for dramatic effect?

You need never choose between the two again. A woman who has Short Hair with Tail has the spunk and practicality of a Short-haired Hottie with all the flowy drama or Rapunzel Hair. A man who has Short Hair with Tail has the stereotypical, short male haircut at the front but gets to be a Badass Long Hair or Long-Haired Pretty Boy at the same time.

Characters with this hairstyle simultaneously rock the short and the long styles -- they're just that awesome. Distinct from Hime Cut in that hime cuts have mid-length side tresses to frame the face, and all long in back, while Short Hair with Tail is quite obviously a short style all around with a noticeable tail.

This is a character design trope, subtrope of Anime Hair. See also Tomboyish Sidetails, Rapunzel Hair and Badass Long Hair. Compare with Anime Hair, for the general likelihood of actually seeing these styles walking around, and Hime Cut, when the short hair is only in front to frame the face.

Examples of Short Hair with Tail include:

Anime & Manga

Comic Books

  • Hopey and Maggie from Love and Rockets have had rattails and variations thereof at different points in the series.


  • The Padawan cut from Star Wars is cropped all around, except for one very long, thin braid.
  • This picture of Mulan, which shows her in the outfit and hairstyle she fought Shan Yu in at the end of the film, but for some reason had her hairstyle drawn in a way so it now includes a ponytail.

Live Action TV

  • The female cut for the Centauri could be considered this--shaved bald except for the long, long ponytail.

Video Games

Web Comics

  • Soli of The Meek has this. She used to have long hair all around, but at some point she cut it.
  • Homestuck:
    • The Handmaid: Neck-length hair, except for two bangs framing her face which reach almost to her feet.
    • Later, Meenah is seen with two braid-thin tails that touch the floor behind her.
  • In Drowtales, Agneya'mukhi Balvhakara has the bangs and sides of a Hime Cut, but this trope in back. (Seen here.)

Western Animation

  • One episode of King of the Hill has Bobby idolizing a garage-band punk rocker with a buzz cut and a rat-tail. His attempts to do the same doesn't take off.
  • If baldness can be taken for "short cut", then Prince Zuko had one in the first season of Avatar: The Last Airbender.

Real Life

  • Attempted with varying degrees of success and failure by mullets. Rarely do they reach Rapunzel Hair length with the long parts, rarely is the long hair badass, and rarely do mulleteers go for the all around short with a single long ponytail--but there are some occurrences.
  • Rat Tail and Duck Tail are also Real Life examples of attempts at this style.
  • A traditional Chinese hairstyle involves having the head mostly shaved bald except for an area in the back of the head which is grown long and braided into a tail. It's called a "queue" - not to be confused with the thing you stand in to wait for something.
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